Afghanistan face Ireland crucial ICC match
KABUL (Pajhwok): Afghanistan would host Ireland for an ICC Intercontinental Cup fixture at their home ground of Greater Noida near New Delhi from Tuesday that could play a crucial role in determining which team gets a shot at playing Test cricket, the world cricket body said on Monday.
Afghanistan would expect familiar conditions help since it needed to gain the maximum of 20 points that would take it ahead of the opposition on the points table. Ireland is currently at the top of the table with 80 points while Afghanistan is on 61 points, after four matches each.
The side that wins the Intercontinental Cup 2015-17 would play the bottom-ranked Test team on the MRF Tyres ICC Test Team Rankings in the ICC Test Challenge in 2018 and try to acquire Test status until the next event in 2022, provided it wins the challenge.
Afghanistan captain Asghar Stanikzai said: “The boys know the importance of the match and are desperately looking to gain 20 points”
Ireland captain William Porterfield said: “It will be a big test for us – the conditions, the turning surface, against a side that has a lot of spinners.”
Afghanistan: Asghar Stanikzai (captain), Afsar Khan, Mohammad Ahmadzai, Dawlat Zadran, Hashmatullah Shaidi, Mohammad Javedi, Mohammad Nabi, Nasir Jamal, Noor Ali, Rahmat Shahi, Rashid Khan, Shabir Noori, Mohammad Shahzad, Zahir Khan.
Ireland: William Porterfield (captain), John Anderson, Peter Chase, George Dockrell, Ed Joyce, Tim Murtagh, Andrew McBrine, Barry McCarthy, Jacob Mulder, Andrew Balbirnie, Niall O’Brien, Paul Stirling, Gary Wilson, Craig Young.
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